And while I will manage to get two teams into playoffs, it's always sad to say goodbye to the guys I drafted not so long ago, and to look at those rosters and know that as much as I failed as a GM, they failed me even more by not living up to my expectations and in some cases (I'm talking to you, Anquan Boldin) shaming me so thoroughly that they'll probably never get on my roster again.
On my 6-6 team, Dr. Noisewater, I would like to thank A.J. Green for a tremendous season. If I'd had as much faith in Andy Dalton as I did in Philip Rivers this year we might be going to the playoffs. Though I don't know how. DeMarco Murray and DeSean Jackson were straight busts. Sure, there were some injuries but they were busts before the injuries. At least Fred Jackson contributed before he got injured. Malcolm Floyd? I misjudged how effective your team would be. I thought the Chargers would score points. I was wrong. Brandon Lloyd? Why did I think Belichick would go vertical? Why? Why? Why? I hate that dude so much.
Things are even worse for the 5-7 team James Westfall. Tony Romo is pretty far along the road to being dead to me. Chris Johnson was the biggest auction bust I've ever had. He owes me a gold tooth. Darren Sproles could never really get it going, even before the injury. Can you believe I have Boldin in this league too? You can? Of course you can. I probably wasted Stevan Ridley by playing him in the games were he sucked (which was half of them) and sitting him on the bench every time he went off. But mad love for my receivers Brandon Marshall, Victor Cruz and T.Y. Hilton. Just goes to show you how one Chris Johnson can completely ruin your whole fantasy season.
I'd discuss my winners but if I did there's no way it wouldn't just jinx the crap out of them. I've made that mistake before. But we can look at who have been the biggest fantasy surprises of the year and speculate on what their value will be going into 2013.
1) Peyton Manning: This is an easy call. I was not alone in thinking that his neckostomy was going to turn him into a crusty old thing who would ruin the Broncos. Instead he looks like he's got another good 2-3 years in him. Even Coach Fox couldn't hold him down.
2) Matt Stafford: Considering how much that team struggles Matthew has been outstanding. No one can turn 3 quarters of worthlessness into a 40-point fantasy day in 15 minutes. It's magical. Lotta good years left in that guy.
3) AndrewLuck/RGIII: Do I really need to talk about them? I think we've heard enough.
4) Two of the top three running backs in my CBS league are Doug Martin and AP. The computers that NASA uses to study Mars could not have picked that. Arian Foster - well, my two-year-old saw that coming.
6) Reggie Wayne: Did you know that while in college Ed Reed killed Reggie Wayne's Burmese Python?
7) Michael Vick : OK, no surprise here. Everyone who drafted Vick did so knowing there was a 98% chance he would never repeat his 2010 performance. And he didn't. Only way Vick ever regains value is if he gets traded to someone with an O-line.
8) Jamaal Charles has both delighted and disappointed in very short time frames. He's had two of the biggest fantasy weeks any back has had, but the long stretches of underutilization make him a sketchy guy to rely on. This weekend he asked for Peyton Manning's autograph - I think what he was really doing was asking Manning to get the Broncos to trade for him. Pretty please?
9) Trent Richardson: So two rookie RBs defied my absolute rule on drafting rookie RBs in the first 4 rounds. I'm sticking with my rule, but I do think it's fair to recognize when I've been trumped. I'm a fair guy.
10) Randall Cobb: He's the highest scoring fantasy receiver on the Green Bay Packers. Chew on that for a minute.
There are many others worthy and deserving of mention, feel free to plug your favorites into the comments.